Thursday, July 4, 2013

Throwback Thursday!

Good morning and Happy 4th of July!  What are your plans?  We are cooking out and heading to fireworks later...that's if the rain holds off.  It's seriously been raining or cloudy in Ohio for the last month.  What is up with that!? Doesn't Mother Nature realize that I am a teacher on summer break trying to get some rays?!!? Before the festivities today, I'm linking up with The First Grade Parade for "Throwback Thursday!"  Today's post is all about organizing a classroom library.

Awhile back, I began organizing my classroom library by theme...prior to that, I had organized by guided reading level.  But....I noticed that my students didn't have as much of an interest in selecting books each week when my library was leveled.  I decided that I felt that if students had a choice in what they were going to read, they'd be more interested.  Thus the library makeover!

The kids ate up the system and have been doing a fantastic job of keeping it organized!  I do spend a lot of time at the beginning of the year going over expectations and care for the library.  At the end of the year, I have a few responsible students go through and check to make sure they are all in their correct baskets.

Each library bucket has a colorful label with the theme and a picture on it.  I also included reading levels (A to Z) for those that still like to organize their library by levels.  Inside each book there are matching sticker labels.  That way, if a book is found on the floor, we all know how to check and put it back in it's place.  It's pretty awesome!

This year, I am going to add some leveled bins to my library, so that students can look at both choice books and books on their level.  I'll be using the A to Z labels included in my library labels pack.

My classroom has always been done in mostly primary colors so I use the Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, and Blue library system below to organize.  I ended up making 2 more colored sets because of requests: Black and White and Red, Lime, Turquoise, and Orange (this was a request to match CTP's "Dots on Turquoise" theme.

How do you organize your library?  I hope you'll take a moment to check out my labels!  Enjoy your day!  Be safe if you are traveling!


Original post made June 8, 2012

I have been organizing my library by theme for the past 5 years.  It is my personal belief that to get children excited about reading, they must have a choice in what they are reading.  I have lived through the era of having strictly a leveled library in my classroom.  I did that for several years.  When students were limited to only books on "their level," they quickly lost interest.  It was also very difficult for me to have a wide variety of books on each level.  Having a visually appealing library with lots of selection is very important to me in my first grade classroom.  Below, you will see some photos of my library.  My students have constant access to it.  My bins shown on the top shelf were purchased at Really Good Stuff.  They have been holding up excellently!  My lager bins were found at Dollar Tree.  They have been holding up ok...a few have cracked when they got over-loaded.  



Elyse D'Andrea-Happily Teaching said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I organize my library by both theme AND level! I have my kids keep 5 books in their book bin at a time and usually require them to pick 2 of those books from their level and then the rest can be from the theme bins. This has worked out really well for them because they have requirements but still have a choice!

My goal this summer was to make labels for all my books so that my library is always organized but it keeps getting pushed of! :)

Happily Teaching

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